There have been many posts made by friends and family expressing shock and surprise at the result of the referendum on the European Union. That tells me something about how much this issue mattered to them. For myself it was what I feared, having stayed up to 12:30 and seen the results of Newcastle and Sunderland come in it started to look either;
- they were an indication of what was to come
- they weren’t
It turns out they were.
Personally I was more upset by the result of last year’s General Election.
Why? I think (despite what the Brexit campaign tried to claim) that a Government has far more impact on our lives than the European Union.
What to do? This might be too soon for some of you but the only response I can recommend is to accept the result. There will not be another chance so we can collectively change our minds.
I said in a recent post that it was a choice between bad and bad. Bad won. It was always going to.
What’s important is how we’re governed.
What do I mean by that?
The major issues as I see it in the UK today are;
- the high cost of housing,
- the relationship between these high costs (of buying or renting for that matter) and the wages most people in the UK recieve
- the relative impotence of employees to improve their working conditions. The only choice many people feel they have is to leave and try their luck with another employer. If you are an NHS junior doctor you have to emigrate. And many have been considering that after Jeremy Hunt’s management of the health service.
More people than not believed coming out of the European Union will make a difference to the above. How? By stopping immigration.
In practical terms we are still in the EU until we leave it. Which is not likely until two years time at the earliest. In that time people can still arrive and work in the European Union. Or so I believe.
There is a certain amount of goodwill towards our government by the people who voted to exit in these matters, but they might start to feel ‘we voted out but nothing has changed’. Even after exiting the EU there will still be immigration, even if from different parts of the world (as there is now anyway). How long before UKIP stop talking about ‘controlling borders’ to ‘send them back’. This is taking us back to territory I lived in through my childhood when the National Front would march through areas with a high concentration of immigrants with the chant of ‘it they’re black, send them back’.
Many who voted to leave the EU will be as horrified as I am if that happens and we have to avoid insulting and stereotyping those that did so. They had genuine and sincere reasons for doing so, even if we disagreed with them. That is democracy. You don’t always find yourself in the majority. Come to think of it I rarely find myself in the majority. And that’s ok. That’s a price I’m prepared to pay for sticking to my principles.
Yesterday I spent the day with my family, one of whom works in a school. Two children were crying yesterday in the school library because they thought they were going to be deported after the EU vote. They were comforted and reassured. They don’t have to worry about such things, not yet anyway.
Things I recommend; hope
Things I don’t recommend; hate